February 24, 2012

Hot Cocoa

I'm not a huge fan of hot cocoa mixes.  They may taste good and have a wonderful aroma, but I find them sickeningly sweet after the first few sips.  I found this simple recipe using cocoa instead of chocolate, so it's much lower in fat, and it has about half the amount of sugar than most cocoa recipes.   It actually tastes like hot chocolate because there's not a ton of sugar masking the flavor!  It is absolutely delicious and I've got the kids hooked on it!  I will never buy a cocoa mix again.  I know they're convenient, but this literally took about 3 minutes to whip up!  It's fun to add different flavors too!  I have a few kids that love coconut (like their Mama) so I just add a few drops of coconut extract and top with toasted coconut.  We made mint cocoa using peppermint extract and topping it off with an Andes thin mint, and an almond cocoa with a few drops of almond extract and an Andes cherry jubilee thin.  Delish!

8 tablespoons cocoa, Dutch works well
4 tablespoons sugar

8 tablespoons water
3 cups (24 ounces) low fat milk
2 teaspoons vanilla, or another flavoring
like peppermint, almond, coconut
2 pinches of cinnamon (if you're using vanilla
and making a straight chocolate cocoa)

Combine the cocoa and sugar in a medium saucepan over medium low heat.  Add the water and whisk well; bring to a boil.  Add the milk and stir well until thoroughly heated, about 2 minutes.  Add your flavorings and combine well.  Curl up with the kids and a great book and enjoy!

Serves 4.

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